Phentermine, a popular diet pill, is one of the most popular online drugs purchased. Consumers of this drug range in all ages, from teens to grand mothers, and are probably unaware that they are breaking any laws. They log online, price compare, complete a short health survey, order the drugs, and then wait for them to arrive at their door.
What Law Is Being Broken?
Those arrested were informed that the doctors and the online pharmacies where they made their purchases were not licensed in the state to distribute narcotics, so those who purchased drugs from them are considered in possession of illegal drugs.
One example cited was that of a woman who was targeted by the task force after she received three parcels containing phentermine from Federal Express. The police arrested her at her home and charged her with possession of Schedule 4 controlled dangerous substances. When she was unable to produce a prescription for the drugs she was placed under arrest.
Local attorney, Lewis Unglesby, told Gates that those arrested may not have violated any law. Unglesby says, "The drugs are legal, you start with that. They are legal drugs so there's nothing wrong with people possessing the drugs. In the absence of any evidence they are re-selling them or acting like a medical facility or pharmacy and distributing them... then I don't see how they're breaking any law."
Up until now the Drug Enforcement Agency and the U.S. Attorney's office have not been involved in any of the Baton Rouge arrests. That may change however, once the debate is settled as to who is breaking the laws -- the doctors, the pharmacies, or the buyers. In the meantime, buyers beware. You may be breaking a local law and get a criminal record for drug possession.
To verify that your online purchases are legal, see Frequently Asked Questions About Dispensing and Purchasing Controlled Substances Over the Internet